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How Lucky: A Novel
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Published:
HarperCollins 2021
Status:
Available from OverDrive
Description

2022 Edgar Award Nominee for Best Novel

"A fantastic novel. . . . You are going to like this a lot."—Stephen King

"What's more thrilling than a fictional character speaking to us in a voice we haven't heard before, a voice so authentic and immediate—think Huck Finn, Holden Caulfield, Mattie Ross—that we suspect it must've been there all along, that we somehow managed to miss it? Daniel, the protagonist of Will Leitch's smart, funny, heartbreaking new novel How Lucky, is just such a voice, and I'm not sure it will ever completely leave my head, or that I want it to."—Richard Russo

For readers of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time and Nothing to See Here, a first novel as suspenseful and funny as it is moving, the unforgettable story of a fiercely resilient young man living with a physical disability, and his efforts to solve a mystery unfolding right outside his door.

Daniel leads a rich life in the university town of Athens, Georgia. He's got a couple close friends, a steady paycheck working for a regional airline, and of course, for a few glorious days each Fall, college football tailgates. He considers himself to be a mostly lucky guy—despite the fact that he's suffered from a debilitating disease since he was a small child, one that has left him unable to speak or to move without a wheelchair.

Largely confined to his home, Daniel spends the hours he's not online communicating with irate air travelers observing his neighborhood from his front porch. One young woman passes by so frequently that spotting her out the window has almost become part of his daily routine. Until the day he's almost sure he sees her being kidnapped...

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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
05/11/2021
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780063073067
ASIN:
B08FK7C4QK
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Will Leitch. (2021). How Lucky: A Novel. HarperCollins.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Will Leitch. 2021. How Lucky: A Novel. HarperCollins.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Will Leitch, How Lucky: A Novel. HarperCollins, 2021.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Will Leitch. How Lucky: A Novel. HarperCollins, 2021. Web.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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Date Added:
May 07, 2021 14:13:48
Date Updated:
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Last Metadata Check:
Jun 26, 2022 15:49:15
Last Metadata Change:
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Last Availability Change:
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Last Grouped Work Modification Time:
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        Will Leitch is a contributing editor at New York magazine and writes weekly for the magazine, Intelligencer and Vulture. He also writes regularly for NBC News, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Medium and MLB.com and is the founder of the late sports website Deadspin. He lives in Athens, Georgia with his wife and two sons.

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2022 Edgar Award Nominee for Best Novel

"A fantastic novel. . . . You are going to like this a lot."—Stephen King

"What's more thrilling than a fictional character speaking to us in a voice we haven't heard before, a voice so authentic and immediate—think Huck Finn, Holden Caulfield, Mattie Ross—that we suspect it must've been there all along, that we somehow managed to miss it? Daniel, the protagonist of Will Leitch's smart, funny, heartbreaking new novel How Lucky, is just such a voice, and I'm not sure it will ever completely leave my head, or that I want it to."—Richard Russo

For readers of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time and Nothing to See Here, a first novel as suspenseful and funny as it is moving, the unforgettable story of a fiercely resilient young man living with a physical disability, and his efforts to solve a mystery unfolding right outside his door.

Daniel leads a rich life in the university town of Athens, Georgia. He's got a couple close friends, a steady paycheck working for a regional airline, and of course, for a few glorious days each Fall, college football tailgates. He considers himself to be a mostly lucky guy—despite the fact that he's suffered from a debilitating disease since he was a small child, one that has left him unable to speak or to move without a wheelchair.

Largely confined to his home, Daniel spends the hours he's not online communicating with irate air travelers observing his neighborhood from his front porch. One young woman passes by so frequently that spotting her out the window has almost become part of his daily routine. Until the day he's almost sure he sees her being kidnapped...

reviews
      • premium: False
      • source: Stephen King
      • content:

        "I'm reading a fantastic novel by Will Leitch called How Lucky. Publishes in May, I think. It's suspenseful and often wildly funny. You are going to like this a lot, and I think a lot of you are going to like it. It has that Where the Crawdads Sing vibe." — Stephen King

        "An absorbing thriller with heart." — People

        "What's more thrilling than a fictional character speaking to us in a voice we haven't heard before, a voice so authentic and immediate - think Huck Finn, Holden Caulfield, Mattie Ross - that we suspect it must've been there all along, that we somehow managed to miss it? Daniel, the protagonist of Will Leitch's smart, funny, heartbreaking new novel How Lucky, is just such a voice, and I'm not sure it will ever completely leave my head, or that I want it to." — Richard Russo

        "Not many writers can shift gears from hilarious to heart-rending to harrowing, all on the same page. Will Leitch does it again and again. How Lucky is one of the most original thrillers I've read in years, with an improbable hero that no reader will ever forget." — Carl Hiaasen

        "It's a testament to Will Leitch's ability that he can blend seemingly disparate elements – mystery and illness and humor and football –and come away with something so winning. How Lucky asserts that "the world is a terrifying place these days" and the novel explores those terrors quite convincingly, yet I was heartened by the depth of Leitch's writing, his obvious love for the world and what it could be. He imbues his hero with a kind of hopefulness that comes from seeing the worst and finding some way to keep living." — Kevin Wilson, New York Times bestselling author of Nothing to See Here

        "How Lucky is a gem: a riveting plot and a narrator who is charming, engaging, and downright inspiring. Will Leitch brilliantly juggles hilarity and horror. I loved this novel — every page." — Chris Bohjalian, #1 Bestselling Author of The Flight Attendant and Hour of the Witch

        "A lovely book. Set in Athens, Georgia, the novel is a model of verisimilitude. It is also beautifully written and suspenseful, at the same time being all about goodness and caring without once being sappy, or, well, sentimental. And that is a rare feat in fiction." — Booklist (starred review)

        "A touchingly imagined portrait of friendship and community." — Sam Sacks, The Wall Street Journal

        "Witty, vigorously written. . . . How Lucky succeeds on more than just luck . . . Leitch builds his cast beautifully. . . . Gives us an authentic, compelling portrait of a narrator who motors through the obstacle course of his life with grit and grace" . — Hamilton Cain, Washington Post

      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        March 22, 2021
        Deadspin founder Leitch (God Save the Fans) attempts to fuse a thriller onto a hopeful story of a man living with a degenerative disease, with surprisingly bland results. Daniel, 26, who uses a wheelchair and is unable to speak because of his spinal muscular atrophy, lives in the college town of Athens, Ga., where he works from home for a regional airline responding to tweets from angry customers and spends time with his perky Pakistani caretaker, Marjani, and stoner buddy Travis. One morning, he sees a young woman get into a tan Camaro outside his home. He later learns college student Ai-Chin has gone missing and believes he had witnessed Ai-Chin’s abduction, then gets way in over his head trying to track down her abductor in a plot combining Daniel, Travis, and Marjani’s Hardy Boys–style sleuthing with Daniel’s obsessive, increasingly dangerous Reddit posts about Ai-Chin and the Camaro. The thriller plot is weakened by long digressions about the effects of Daniel’s disease, frequent musings on subjects such as college football, and the implausibility that Daniel would blithely put himself in harm’s way. The well-intentioned portrayal of what it means to live with a degenerative condition fails to compensate for the absence of convincing characters and plot. Readers can safely take a pass. Agent: David Gernert, the Gernert Co.

      • premium: True
      • source: Kirkus
      • content:

        March 15, 2021
        The lone witness to an abduction tries to get skeptical police--and a skeptical society--to see past his wheelchair. Like most residents of Athens, Georgia, 26-year-old Daniel looks forward to the escape of Game Week, when the University of Georgia plays football at home. Unlike most of them, however, Daniel has spinal muscular atrophy, a progressive genetic disorder that attacks the body from the core out. He can still move his left hand, which he uses to operate his wheelchair and type on an iPad that interfaces with his voice speaker and allows him to work on social media for a commuter airline. One morning Daniel sees a familiar young woman climb into a tan Camaro. After she's reported missing, he posts what he saw on Reddit and begins an email exchange with someone claiming to be the car's driver. The members of a well-drawn, if spare, cast play supporting roles--Marjani, Daniel's overworked caregiver; Travis, his lifelong best friend, who's "like a stoner Ichabod Crane"; Jennifer, the grad student who is "suddenly the matriarch of this weird little family"--but the story belongs to Daniel. He's funny, often self-deprecating, and cleareyed about how many people perceive "someone who doesn't seem to have control of any element of his body," but he wants people to "remember there's a person in here." Leitch, who is abled, drew inspiration from his young son's friend who was diagnosed with SMA as a toddler, and the best parts of the book are the reflective, informative passages when Daniel is discussing his ever evolving relationship with his condition. The resolution of the mystery is neither surprising nor terribly realistic, but it's not really the point here. A lightweight thriller contours an earnest, sincere portrait of a hero whom many insist on seeing as a victim.

        COPYRIGHT(2021) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

      • premium: True
      • source: Booklist
      • content:

        April 1, 2021
        Twenty-six-year-old Daniel sees the girl get into a Camaro but doesn't realize until later that he has just witnessed a kidnapping. Until then, we learn about him. We learn he has spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a progressive disease that has robbed him of the power of speech and use of his limbs except for his left hand, which he can use to type. He is able to move about, thanks to a motorized wheelchair. Despite all this, he considers himself lucky, and so he is in the people in his life: his lifelong best friend, Travis, and his caregiver, a woman named Marjami. Both are wonderful, caring people and Daniel is pretty wonderful himself, memorably kind. Self-reliant, he lives by himself and doesn't deserve what is about to happen to him, once the kidnapper, Jonathan, discovers--thanks to Daniel's careless Reddit post--that Daniel has seen the crime. Has Daniel's luck run out? It's rare that a crime novel could be described as lovely but this is a lovely book. Set in Athens, Georgia, the novel is a model of verisimilitude. It is also beautifully written and suspenseful, at the same time being all about goodness and caring without once being sappy or, well, sentimental. And that is a rare feat in fiction.

        COPYRIGHT(2021) Booklist, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

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2022 Edgar Award Nominee for Best Novel

"A fantastic novel. . . . You are going to like this a lot."—Stephen King

"What's more thrilling than a fictional character speaking to us in a voice we haven't heard before, a voice so authentic and immediate—think Huck Finn, Holden Caulfield, Mattie Ross—that we suspect it must've been there all along, that we somehow managed to miss it? Daniel, the protagonist of Will Leitch's smart, funny, heartbreaking new novel How Lucky, is just such a voice, and I'm not sure it will ever completely leave my head, or that I want it to."—Richard Russo

For readers of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time and Nothing to See Here, a first novel as suspenseful and funny as it is moving, the unforgettable story of a fiercely resilient young man living with a physical disability, and his efforts to solve a mystery unfolding right outside his...

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awards
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publisher
HarperCollins